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Stainless steel cable carrier proves successful under extreme conditions

Stainless steel cable carrier proves successful under extreme conditions

A solid stainless steel cable carrier is ensuring the performance of the crane systems on the huge ship, the North Sea Giant.

The North Sea Giant, with its two cranes, is one of the largest and most advanced ships ever built in this way. The huge ship is driven with five propellers from Voith Schneider. The North Sea Giant has a length of 161m and is designed with a width of 30m for extreme deployments in high seas. It is equipped with several crane systems and has a total capacity of nearly 1,000 tons.

With a lifting capacity of 420 tons, the SHS Tower Crane from AXTech in Molde, Norway, is a new tool for installing and maintaining subsea installations and technical equipment in the North Sea. Tsubaki Kabelschlepp products contribute significantly to the safe function of the complex crane system, which is operated and maintained by TechnipFMC, a global leader in oil and gas projects. Due to the particularly massive construction and advanced technical equipment of the ship, the North Sea Giant is operational under extreme maritime conditions.

The ship’s crane is designed so that it has a movement span of 180°. This allows heavy equipment and facilities up to 400 tons to be lifted from the deck of the ship into the sea. The transport is ensured with more than 15 hydraulic hoses which are filled to approximately 450 bar. Due to the circular movement of the crane, it is necessary to guide the hose during movement to ensure a secure supply to the crane. Due to the extreme sea conditions during use with swinging loads in excess of 400 tons, the power supply to the crane is a critical interface in ensuring the function, and in particular, the safety of the entire facility.

In order to achieve the maximum safety and service life for the crane, it was decided to use a cable carrier for routing the hoses. The system is to guarantee the power supply to the base of the crane, a few metres above the water level, at any time and under extreme weather conditions. Here, it is inevitable that the entire device will be regularly 10% exposed to the salt water. The system must also guarantee the necessary stability required due to ship movements in rough seas.

With these technical parameters and operating conditions Tsubaki Kabelschlepp was contacted to provide a complete cable carrying solution.

When the cable carrier project planning was started, all construction space conditions of the existing and already partly made steel structure of the crane were already given. Due to this, the adaption of the entire design of the solid stainless steel cable carrier and the necessary supporting structure in close consultation with the customer was required. Here, a complete solution was developed in close cooperation with the various technical departments and using 3D simulations, that met the limited construction space specifications and the extreme requirements.

The steel structure from Tsubaki Kabelschlepp was created so that a possibility was established to pre-assemble the complete facility in an assembly hall in order to subsequently raise these segment parts onto the ship within the shortest possible amount of time and with only three lifts. Through this, the assembly time and the resulting costs were able to be drastically reduced.

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